Overworked? Underpaid?

Have you ever felt like taking a step back from life and reevaluating who you are, what you want and what you need? For some, it’s a phase that regenerates itself after a period of time, and for others, they never have to do this for whatever reason. Whether it’s your career, love life or anything else that’s causing you grief or stress, taking a break from it proves only to be the healthiest option. I remember going through a turbulent and stressful breakup years ago, and at the same time, trying to change my career from customer service & accounting to a full time writer. It was a steep move, both in subject and pay. My anxiety levels were at its highest, straight from the commute to and from work, the rigid hours, to finding myself dealing with a broken relationship when I got back home. As soon as I came home, I opened a bottle of wine to only stress & obsess. My mind wouldn’t stop. It was like a film projector showing me clips of the worst parts of my life, over and over again. My self-esteem dwindled and I found myself sinking into a deep depression. I had to do something. I made a drastic move: I quit everything. I quit my job, I quit relationships and anything that stressed me out for one whole year. My well of pennies may have been running dry, but hell if I’m gonna die doing something in life that I hated.

Reservations were made. A beautiful beach cottage overlooking the vast ocean for two whole weeks. I went out there with my laptop and an entire book inside my head. Each morning, I’d sit outside with a cup of coffee and watched the waves crash in. I had nothing waiting for me: no deadlines, no expecting partner to ask questions of my whereabouts, no phone calls from managers asking me to come in on a Saturday - I only had one thing: chapters of my book to fill. I knew eventually I had to get my shit together and start my life back up again, but this was “me” time; this was an absolute must to my overall health. Sure people mocked me, even went as far to say, “Oh she just does what she wants to do.” You’re damn straight. And if more people don’t do this, you’ll see the emergency rooms fill up with more cases of chest pains, heart attacks and other things that are all caused from stress. Of course it’s important to safeguard your future, however, when does it come to the point of losing yourself, physically and emotionally, just because you want your bank account at a certain status? Something’s gotta give.

Life’s too short to waste it all inside a cubical, unless you’re doing something you absolutely enjoy. I know a few people in my life who revolve their conversations around financial security and “numbers” all the time, worrying about their golden years. So basically, throughout their entire career as a young person, growing into a middle-aged businessperson, they usually never get to enjoy what they have earned due to worry alone. I’m not saying it’s good to spend all your money in one place, if that’s what you want to do, but to live as though you’re storing nuts like a squirrel 24/7 and not even enjoying it one bit is a waste of a life in my opinion. Not only does the “worry” affect your emotional health, but it also trickles into your relationships, romantic life as well as your time with your family. It’s all work work work, and usually, the only thing these people offer up in a conversation are work and financial matters. It’s normal for people to just talk about their surroundings and happenings in life; what they know.

“It is possible to give freely and become more wealthy, but those who are stingy will lose everything.” -Proverbs 11:24

It’s like a game of Rummy 500, if you don’t give a little, you’ll lose the game. It’s about giving your best card out, and then receiving it back, leaving you with a better hand. It always works that way, and it’s the same with life. I’ve seen so many people stress over money, to the point of almost killing themselves, as well as some of their business and personal relationships. People have this assumption that in order to be happy, you must have money. I can tell you right now, that if someone is depressed, it won’t matter if you drag them out of their tiny studio apartment, straight into a 5,000 sq foot mansion --they’re still going to be depressed. They may get an adrenaline high from all the wealth, but it'll eventually fade and the novelty will soon wear off. Happiness is a constant joy, even if you’re bound to get depression from time-to-time. General overall “happiness” comes from gratitude and love. Without the two, life’s meaningless. So if you’re one of those busy bees constantly storing for nuts, try taking a step back and spoiling yourself with what’s been right underneath your nose.